Music: Graham Wright's Solo Offshoot

Jul 1, 2011 9:00 AM, By Sarah Benzuly

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What started out as demos turned into a full-fledged solo album. Tokyo Police Club keyboardist Graham Wright has always had songs percolating in his brain—even before TPC was formed—and he finally got his chance. Working again with TPC engineers Jay Sadlow and Dean Marino, Wright snatched whatever free time he had (and cash, as he was self-funding this project) and headed into Chemical Sound (Toronto), Sadlow and Marino’s studio. “I basically started recording songs with Dean and Jay in the beginning of 2009, but I thought I was making demos,” Wright recalls. “I had written a bunch of songs and I wanted to do something with them. We recorded two songs each day, and when I sent [the demos] to my manager, he said, ‘They sound like you’re making proper recordings.’ So from them on, it became more [a full album].”

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With all three playing instruments, Sadlow and Marino focused more on the music and less on engineering techniques. “Instead,” Sadlow says, “we’d use performance and arrangement to create interest. We doubled horn parts with distorted guitars, we doubled keyboard parts with chromatic bells. If we had an impulse to try a part, we would usually grab the nearest microphone and hit Record. We tried to keep things moving pretty fast because we favored energy over all else.”

Adds Marino, “This album was all about spontaneity and having fun, and I think you can definitely hear that.” Wright concurs: “I’m so glad we started off not knowing what we were doing because I think it really defined the approach that we took, which was a very light touch and ‘let’s live in the moment.’” Shirts Vs. Skins is now available.






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